Teaching our kids about managing money as well as respecting how it is earned is a valuable lesson at any age – and the younger the better.
Teaching even our very young about the value of money will put them in good stead and help them develop good financial habits as they grow.
Teach them respect for their belongings
It is hard for kids to understand why parents can get so upset when they come home from school and have lost their
- all of the above on the same day.
Teaching your kids to have respect for their belongings and to take care of their possessions is the start of a lifelong lesson of respect for belongings – both yours and others.
Pocket money is earned – not a given
Pocket money is a great way to instil a good work ethic in your kids from a young age. Creating a pocket money chart with age-appropriate chores and ways to earn their pocket money is important. Keep it in a highly visible area like on the fridge so your kids can see it regularly, it is a talking point with your kids and they can refer back to it.
How much your kids receive and how often is up to you, but start small and work your way up. Younger kids will need a more frequent pocket money day, such as weekly as otherwise the end goal may seem to far in the distance for them.
Be firm with your rewards – pocket money should be earned and not just given. It is a reward for hard work well done. You will thank yourself down the track!
Speak honestly and openly about work and the value of money
Working parents are a great role model for kids – don’t be afraid to discuss why you go to work and the fact that you work to earn money (as well as for enjoyment, social interaction and everything else…). Teach your kids that the workforce is a great place to be and the financial rewards are a great incentive to work hard.
Invest in their own money box or school banking
Children love having their own moneybox – even if it is just to turn upside down every day and dump the money out. Perhaps the first investment from their first pocket money payday is a brand new moneybox to house their future pocket money stash.
For school-aged children, most schools offer a school banking system with fun rewards to encourage kids to save. Banks offer no fees for kids’ accounts so it’s a great way to start their savings habits. Encourage your kids to save for something special – sit down and discuss this with them early on so they can work towards a big goal.
Role Play – teach them at their own level
For our toddlers and pre-schoolers, the best way to learn is a play-based system that is suitable for their age. Role play is a brilliant way to do this. Your kids can dress up as mum or dad and get ready for a day at the shops. Our toy giants have made money lessons really fun and enjoyable for youngsters with some brilliant props on tap you can use. Think of the brightly coloured cash registers and play money in the toddler aisle. Even the latest Shopkins craze has supermarket aisles and cash registers. Teaching kids with toys they love will make the learning fun and relevant to them. For instance
‘To buy more Shopkins we need have some money. Where do you think we can get money to pay for these Shopkins? How do we earn it?’
No matter how you do it, teaching your kids about managing and respecting money is a valuable life lesson that can never be started too early.
If you want to read up further, Kochie has some great real life examples and tips on managing money with your kids so check them out for more handy hints.